Okay, so here’s the first truly urban post on Urban Hallucination. This past weekend I visited the Dover St. Market in New York and omg was it the cutest little 7 floors I’ve ever been to. The building layout was slightly inconvenient the way each floor couldn’t have been more than 300 square feet and you can’t actually access every floor, but after reading up on this shop, I learned the ease of location and traditional store layout were exactly what this brand didn’t want for their retail space.
First, a little history lesson (so if you’re seriously uninterested, go ahead and and skip to the next section.) Rei Kawakubo, fashion designer and founder of Comme des Garcons, configured the idea for a “Dover St. Market”, though Adrian Joffe, president of Comme des Garcons International, was the real brains behind this project and made sure this idea came to life boldly. The first location was founded in Mayfair, London in 2004. Funny that I write about this right now, though, because just over a week ago this original location was moved to Haymarket, London. There is another installment in Beijing, China, and its latest counterpart in New York City.
The entire shop is more of an art display than a traditional retail space. There are two columns that run straight through all 7 floors, and are decorated uniformly through every floor. Here’s a look of each of the columns, along with a pleated dress from Comme des Garcons.
I have to say, though, the best surprise there was when my friend Larissa and I didn’t feel we’d captured enough of the market so after reaching the first floor, we made our way back upstairs to the 6th floor and saw Bill Cunningham, fashion photographer for the New York Times. If you ever get a chance, I encourage you to watch his documentary: Bill Cunningham New York. He’s just such a wonderful soul, and after seeing him in person, I realize his movie couldn’t have been a better representation of Mr. Cunningham and all his wonderfulness. To the right he’s checking out some of the blue Comme des Garcons pieces.
This 6th floor alone contains almost 30 designers complete with apparel, shoes, and accessories. Somehow, though, it all seems to fit together to create a blue, but something far from somber, atmosphere.
Here’s just a few pictures I took of some of the fascinating displays at Dover St. The Supreme store is located on the 7th floor, and I always love the play on colors within the collages found in their displays. Partially because of the reputation of Dover Street Market, you won’t really find the classic Supreme logo t-shirts, but more of their button downs and jackets at this location. Each floor has a different vibe based on the brands and looks that it carries, and the sales associates do very well to emphasize that feeling also.
The Gucci collection pictured above right is located on the 7th floor. Yes, most of this floor has this patterned floor, walls, and ceiling. No, surprisingly it didn’t give me the type of headache you would expect. The black Comme des Garcons pieces pictured to the left are located on the 6th floor.The picture above left is from the 4th floor looking down onto the 3rd floor. These beautiful various pieces of wood are painted to look like different grains. The section of the wall pictured above right is from the 4th floor where almost all walls are covered in artificial flowers while also moving in ROYGBIV sequence throughout the room.